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Room-By-Room Ideas For Displaying Your Book Collection At Home

August 10, 2020

If you ask me where books "belong," according to feng shui, there's not a single place I can rule out. Books are fabulous everywhere. That said, books are filled with symbolism, stories, wisdom, and personal associations, and they, therefore, carry a lot of energy. And feng shui can certainly give us ideas about how to display and channel that energy to create positivity at home.

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Before you place your books, edit down your collection.

Before deciding what books to put in what room, you might want to take a look at your collection as a whole: What do you want to read? What won't you ever read, even though maybe you're holding on to it because you bought it? What have you "outgrown" or no longer feel aligned with?

Every time I've done a big book purge, it's helped me make space for new things and opened my eyes to how much my interests and focus may have shifted even over a year or two. Donating books is a terrific way to pay the wisdom forward.

Once you're clear on the books you want to keep, organize them in a way that makes them easy to access. 

Rainbow-organized, color-coded bookshelves are quite a sight, but they aren't always the most user-friendly. If you're someone who pulls books off the shelves often, you'll want to sort them so they're easy to find. (Sorting by topic works best for me right now.)

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Then, consider location.

Traditionally speaking, the Wisdom area of your home (the far left corner of your home that's aligned with your entrance door, according to the bagua map) is thought to be ideal for books. That said, about 1% of my clients have a space in this area that is suited for any kind of books.

So instead, I'd recommend placing bookshelves where they can really shine, especially if you're a book lover. If you don't have bookshelves, I suggest getting a sturdy shelf (vintage ones are great) that is bigger than you think you need. You can always fill empty space with framed photos, art, and houseplants until your book collection takes it over. If your home has multiple rooms, consider staggering your book collection based on the following ideas.

Living room and den

These rooms are definitely great for big art books, photo books, and other aptly named "coffee table" books, but don't stop there! Placing a small shelf of books that you and other members of your family are currently reading in a popular common space can help you keep them top of mind. I read so much more when I have my current rotation of books on a side table next to my sofa waiting for me.

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Kitchen

Kitchens are nice for—you guessed it—cookbooks! They're also great spaces for nutrition guides. It's a bit tricky to fit books in many kitchens, so it's a great bonus (and can look amazing) if you have the space.

Bedroom

You'll want to be a little more intentional about the books you bring into the bedroom. For example, keep work books out of your bedroom as much as possible so you can disengage from work before sleep. You might want to keep heavy drama and crime novels off the nightstands, too. Think about it this way: You want the books in your bedroom to reflect your self-love and your love life.

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Bathroom

If you have a tub, why not keep books in the bathroom too? Since bath time is self-care time, I'd keep it light, but there are no hard-and-fast rules here.   

Office

Office spaces, wherever they may be at home, are excellent for inspirational creativity books, and, of course, books that speak to your work and passions. Having books you can pull off the shelf for a quick rest or dose of inspiration is so valuable. If you don't have any of these inspiring reads right now, reach out to friends for recommendations. Every time I add a few of these to my shelves, I can feel the difference in my office almost instantly.

When it comes to placing books, you really can't go wrong. But with a little sorting, curating, and intentional decision making, you can use books to highlight the themes and energies you want to attract into every room of your house.

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Dana Claudat
Dana Claudat

Dana Claudat is a modern Feng Shui Master and founder of The School Of Intention Feng Shui Certification Program. In the last 15 years Claudat has pioneered her own approach to Feng Shui that is rooted in infinite possibility, creativity and empowerment. Rather than hope for lucky results and outcomes, she helps her clients to create them every day.

She’s a Stanford-educated art historian with more than a decade of experience in design yet her approach to space is simple. Claudat is a longtime mindbodygreen contributor and instructor (she may have had a hand in the hundreds of plants in mindbodygreen headquarters!), and her work has been featured in design and lifestyle publications around the world.

You can work with her from wherever you are in the world in her online Feng Shui Camps and through her Online Feng Shui Consultations.

You can sign up for her weekly Feng Shui Rituals, including rituals for every New and Full Moon, right here!

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